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Montpellier - A few questions

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Aug 2nd, 2015, 07:26 AM
  #1
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Montpellier - A few questions

Has anybody stayed at the Grand Hotel du Midi recently?. Since it's been redone? We have reservations at the Ibis Centre Comedie but. . . .

Any recent dinner recommendations?

Gone to any of the mansions either in the old part of the city or just outside (Chateau de Flaugergues and Chateau de la Mogere?

Gone to Musee Fabre? How does it compare to others?

Jardin des Plantes worth the time and effort? How does it compare to that in Paris?

Any last things I should know about that I haven't thought of? Try to guess what I haven't thought of.

Thanks.
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Aug 2nd, 2015, 08:55 AM
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Dinner recommendations: Le Petit Jardin (this one was recommended by Stu D). We loved sitting outside on a beautiful evening. Excellent dining experience.

And La Maison De La Lozère. One of our best meals of two weeks. This suggestion came from our hotel.

Have a great trip to Montpellier!
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Aug 2nd, 2015, 09:04 AM
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We were there two weeks ago.

Fabulous dinner at La Diligence
www.la-diligence.com

We stayed at the Pullman Centre because we could walk there from the train station, where we returned the rental car.

Don't try to drive to the place near the train station where rental cars are returned. A disaster.

Just wander around in Montpellier. Just about every street is pedestrian-only (one of the reasons for the above "disaster").

Stu Dudley
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Aug 2nd, 2015, 09:11 AM
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Mansions.

We took the walking tour offered by the Tourist Office. The last part of the tour was a visit to a mansion. Very tedious - and we love old houses. We, and several other people tried to "sneak out" of the tour early - but we were locked inside the house. Finally we found an open door and escaped. This was about 10 years ago.

Stu Dudley
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Aug 2nd, 2015, 09:28 AM
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I think the Jardin des Plantes in Montpellier is far superior that that in Paris. First, because of the climate they can have more plants, and some warm weather ones that are not in Paris. Second, it is just landscaped more nicely and has more structure. I'm not a fan of the one in Paris, don't think it's that great. I can't tell anyone whether they think it's worth their time and effort or not, as a lot of people aren't interested in those things anyway, but if you thought the one in Paris was good, then I would think you'd like the one in Montpellier.
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Aug 2nd, 2015, 10:15 AM
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Thanks.

I'll check out the dinner recommendations.

We won't have a car so driving in Montpellier won't be an issue.

The visitors center does not have guided tours on the two days we're there, so any mansions we do go to will be on our own. They did send me some comments about the mansions. Two a bit outside the main part of the city and a few in the old area.

I haven't been to the Jardin des Plantes in Paris and we'll probably pass on it again. We're going to Paris again from Montpellier.

Our two days there include a full Sunday and Monday so I have to account for what is open on each of those days.

The two questions left are how Musee Fabre compares to the other main museums and if anybody knows anything about Grand Hotel du Midi since its renovation and I think change of either ownership or operation.

Thanks again.
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Aug 2nd, 2015, 02:06 PM
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Frankly, I like the Ibis hotels. No unpleasant surprises and always an excellent breakfast which allows me to skip lunch.
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Aug 2nd, 2015, 05:15 PM
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Kerouac,

I just figured if I can get a 4 star right on the corner of the main square up the street from the train station and it's not a bland chain, maybe I should do it.

On the other hand, they may still be doing some construction and as you say, with the bland chain you shouldn't have bad surprises.

Probably stay with what I have.
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Aug 2nd, 2015, 05:57 PM
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There wasn't any construction on the main square of Montpellier when we were there 2 weeks ago yesterday. Only construction we saw was outside of Centre Ville, and this also added to "the disaster" when we returned the car.

Stu Dudley
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Aug 2nd, 2015, 09:11 PM
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Stu,

I think I ran two things together in my sentence.

The hotel is right "off" the main square and the construction was/is inside the hotel (maybe a bit outside - I don't know).
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Aug 3rd, 2015, 01:01 PM
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Myer, thanks for bringing these questions to the forum. We are planning two days in Montpellier in September, after Avignon and Arles, and before Paris. No car, traveling by train.

Happy to learn, kansas (and StuDudley), about le Petit Jardin. I had been considering it and now I am convinced. Thanks.

I was thinking about the Chateau de Flaugergues for lunch and a stroll through the gardens. Can anyone tell me about their experience there?

Any comments for me and Myer on Musee Fabre?
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Aug 3rd, 2015, 04:03 PM
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I was in Montpelier in June and think that the Jardin des Plantes was closed Monday. Please double check the opening times.
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Aug 3rd, 2015, 05:38 PM
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k_marie,

Out itinerary has us starting in Barcelona, then Toulouse and a few day trips, then Montpellier and ending in Paris.

A few years ago we started in Aix, then spent about a week based in Avignon and did several day trips and ended in Paris.

Paris is always good for several days.

Yes, Jardin des Plantes is closed Mondays as well as Musee Fabre.

If we go to either or both they would be on Sunday which is our other day in Montpellier.

The mansions would be on Monday. For a while I was leaning toward Chateau de la Mogere but the more I look into it the more it appears Chateau de Flaugergues is the more visited and impressive.

Getting there and back is a bit of an issue but should be doable.

I've been looking into some of the recommended restaurants and they're all in the "gastronomiques" category. We really don't eat that way and it might take some convincing to go that route.
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Aug 3rd, 2015, 06:28 PM
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Le chateau de Flaugergues is 3 kilometers from the town center, 4 kilometers from the train station. According to the website, use bus #9. If you are going soon, the interior is not accessible on Mondays in August and September.

Le Petit Jardin, in addition to the restaurant, also has a bistro. I have not yet decided if we'll splurge for the white tablecloths and the "gastronomique" experience or choose the bistro side. We do tend to the casual for dining when we are traveling for a few weeks, considering both budget and wardrobe. But we'll see.

We will arrive in Montpellier on a Thursday, leave for Paris on Saturday, so we'll not face the closings of le jardin and le musee Fabre. However, unfortunately for my husband, it seems there are no English language tours available from the TI on the days we'll be there. We'll probably stop at the TI early in our vIsit to see if something is available.

We'll be in Avignon for seven days, with several day trips. Maybe L'Ile-sur-Sorgue and/or Orange on our own and bus tours--a full day Camargues tour and a half-day Roman Sites (Nimes, Uzes, Pont du Gard). Looking at provencereservations.com for the tours.
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Aug 3rd, 2015, 08:15 PM
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k_marie,

When we were in province a few years ago we went to Pont du Gard and Uzes by bus on the same day. Unfortunately, the day we went was market day in Uzes so the main square was over run with the market. It a very nice and almost too clean town.

We went to Ile-sur-la-Sorgue by train on market day. Another nice town.

We went to Arles but passed on Nimes.

We went to Montpellier for about 3 hours one afternoon. As soon as we got off the train we realized this placed needed a return visit and more time to relax.

We took one afternoon mini-bus tour of Gordes, Roussillon and another that skips my mind. All the rest were either by train of bus though we try to keep bus to a minimum.

About Chateau de Flaugegues and Chateau de la Mogere. The No Tramway has a Odysseum stop (last stop) that's about a 15 minute walk from one and about 20 minutes (maybe slightly longer) to the other.

You can take a taxi from the tramway stop but you'd have to call for a taxi back.
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Aug 4th, 2015, 10:41 AM
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k_marie,

You are correct about Chateau de Flaugergues not being open on Mondays in August.

So it will either be Chateau de la Mogere or not.

The Tourist Office sent me the names and addresses of a few Mansions within the old part of the city. If these are nice maybe we'll pass of going outside of the city.
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